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Let this beloved saint help you find meaning in September

Tricolor Padre Pio

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Annabelle Moseley - published on 09/01/23

This month is dedicated to Our Lady's great suffering, and Padre Pio can help us grow closer to her.

In this month of September, which is dedicated to the Seven Sorrows of Mary, we are reminded through Our Blessed Mother’s example that glorious mysteries follow sorrowful mysteries. Thus we can invoke Padre Pio, who was given a large share of suffering in this life, even unto bearing the stigmata, to be our guide.

We ask him to intercede for us that we may persevere in prayer and have the tenacity to see sorrows and sufferings as graces leading us closer to our Lord and Lady.

St. Pio is a wonderful mentor this September, the month in which the Church calls us to deepen our devotion to the Seven Sorrows of Mary, which are: The Prophecy of Simeon, The Flight into Egypt, The Search for the Child in Jerusalem, Mary Meets Jesus on the Way of the Cross, Standing at the Foot of the Cross, The Crucifixion and Descent from the Cross, and Assisting at the Burial of Christ.

(Here is a link to pray an online guided


St. Pio is a favorite saint of many, and he is known as one who is very helpful and kind to all those who seek his intercession.

Born Francesco Forgione in 1887, this great Italian saint who became the Capuchin priest known as Padre Pio, lived at the friary in San Giovanni Rotondo. But he also has a very special bond with America. This is because his father went to Jamaica, New York, twice to work, raising money to provide for his family.

Directly after Mass on September 20, 1918, Padre Pio had a vision of Jesus and then received the stigmata not only on his hands, as is frequently remembered, but also on his feet and side. He endured persecution for these wounds by many throughout his life. Some in the Vatican were skeptical of Padre Pio and for several years, he was stripped of the faculties of his priestly ministry, except to say private Mass. Padre Pio endured this deep sorrow with heroic patience, trusting in God. 

When his public priestly faculties were restored, he spent 10 hours hearing Confessions daily. His Holy Mass took about three hours. He built a hospital near his friary which he called: “House for the Alleviation of Suffering.”

Let us then turn to Our Sorrowful Mother and to the intercession of Padre Pio when we wish our suffering to be alleviated, and to be reminded of the deep purpose our suffering provides when it is offered up to God.

3 Quotes to reflect on

Here are three quotes by Padre Pio that serve as wisdom for us in our own lives and a special inspiration this September, reminding us thatsuffering when offered to God with love is a great source of holiness.

1) “The cross will not crush you; if its weight makes you stagger, its power will also sustain you.”

After all: when Simon of Cyrene took hold of the Cross, he was assisted by the very blood of Jesus which was upon the Cross. This should remind us that when we stagger under the weight of the cross, we will also experience the nearness of Christ.

2) “By suffering we are able to give something to God. The gift of pain, of suffering, is a big thing and cannot be accomplished in Paradise.”

We are reminded in this quote that our suffering is a precious gift we can give God while we’re still on earth, to offer up for the conversion of souls, the souls for whom we are praying, the release of souls in Purgatory, the reparation of the hearts of Jesus and Mary, and the purification of our own soul.

3) “Your tears were collected by the angels and were placed in a golden chalice, and you will find them when you present yourself before God.”

This image, explained by Padre Pio who was famously devoted to his guardian angel, is a beautiful comfort for hard times. Imagine tears shed in sorrow as a gift of the Holy Spirit to help us draw closer to God; a gift we cannot fully understand this side of heaven. As St. Teresa of Avila counseled in The Interior Castle, we should leave “tears to fall when God sends them, without trying to force ourselves to shed them. Then, if we do not take too much notice of them, they will leave the parched soil of our souls well-watered, making it fertile in good fruit; for this is the water which falls from heaven.”

How to celebrate

To celebrate the influence of St. Pio this month, try having a Padre Pio-themed dinner: any delicious Italian food will do … and perhaps invite someone who is lonely to join you for that dinner, in the spirit of the “alleviation of suffering.”

Or why not buy a cappuccino (Padre Pio was a Capuchin) for someone who needs a good cheering up? Sometimes these simple gestures have lasting effects, especially if you are also offering special prayers for that person, too.

Try praying Padre Pio’s favorite go-to prayer, the Chaplet of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, all month long for three souls in your life who need help.

And since Padre Pio was a famous confessor, go to the Sacrament of Reconciliation in Padre Pio’s honor! Ask for his help recalling all the sins that have been burdening your conscience so you can feel truly lighter and happier once you’ve prayed your penance.

To honor the Seven Sorrows of Mary this September and follow the example of Padre Pio’s spirit of reparation, visit Catholic Holy Hour and sign up to receive a Padre Pio and Seven Sorrows of Mary-themed Holy Hour you can pray right at home.

Padre Pio was a zealous advocate of praying the at-home holy hour which recalls the suffering of Jesus and gives joy to the Heart of Mary when it is prayed, as it consoles her Son. Thisbeautiful devotion so dear to Padre Pio will give us a closer bond with Jesus and Mary.

Padre PioSpiritual Life
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